The UNH Chamber Singers, under the direction of William Kempster, were invited to back Josh Groban during two performances of his Stages tour earlier this fall. The first took place at The Wang Theater in Boston on September 25 and the second at the Performing Arts Centre in Providence, RI on October 2.
Josh Groban is a best-selling singer, songwriter, actor, and record producer who has sold over 25 million records worldwide. On his latest CD, Stages, he performs songs from popular musicals such as The Phantom Of The Opera, Les Misérables, Into The Woods, A Chorus Line, and many others, with special guests Kelly Clarkson and Chris Botti. The North American leg of his Stages tour wraps up in November when he’ll move on to Europe, Africa, and beyond.
The UNH Chamber Singers sang back up on two songs, “You’ll Never Walk Alone” from Carousel and “Anthem” from Chess.
This is not the first time that that UNH singers have backed famous acts. Kenny Rogers and Barry Manilow utilized UNH choirs in previous years. Kempster suspects that it was the promoter of those events that recommended UNH singers to Steve Trudell, a national talent contractor who has worked with artists and tours such as the Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Michael Bublé, Alanis Morisette, Page & Plant, Natalie Cole, Joni Mitchell, Rod Stewart, The Three Tenors, Smokey Robinson, Vince Gill and others.
“Steve asked me to get together a 60-voice choir for the Boston and Manchester shows of ‘Star Wars in Concert’ in 2009,” says Kempster, “a world-tour that must have cost billions as they traveled the entire Royal Philharmonic Orchestra (UK) to 30-plus countries for it. And it was Steve who rang me to get a 20-voice group together for the Boston and Providence shows on Josh Groban’s ‘Stages’ tour.”